Well it’s been a wee while since my last blog and it’s not as if I haven’t had spare time to write one… thank you Covid 19! So here is something a bit different to my usual animal portraits.
Lanark is a market town close to where I live in Scotland and in the town there is a beautiful old building called the Tolbooth, which is used for various events including art exhibitions.
I am proud to be part of the Tolbooth Artists group and our summer exhibition which closes on 12 September has a theme of Coasts and Rivers. The pieces of work displayed by local artists have been wonderful, giving visitors plenty to enjoy in a Covid-safe environment.
I was delighted to find out that both of my paintings submitted, have been sold. A large acrylic on canvas of the setting sun on Arran (just off the west coast of Scotland) and a small pastel painting of moonlit waves – two coastal scenes but different in size, subject and medium used. Both fun to do and both now in new homes.
Coast to coast!
Setting Sun On Arran
I was approached a few weeks’ ago by an old school friend, Ann on Facebook to see if I would like to donate a piece of art for an upcoming Art Exhibition & Auction being held in Chester, U.K. by the Brooke organisation which helps working horses, donkeys & mules around the world.
It educates the owners to work their animals without causing distress or suffering. Of course, I wanted to do my bit and contribute to such a great cause, so after a chat with Ann about what would be suitable and her help with the text to accompany the artwork, I found a reference photo by Leslie Charlesworth which was available to use with his permission and modified it to produce a pastel painting called ‘Resignation’.
The title explains the feeling that this mare has, as you can see what she is dealing with in the reflection of her eye if you look closely.
I hope that the auction raises a good amount for the Brooke organisation to further their work.
This Unison pastel painting on Pastelmat is of my studio assistant, looking pensive. I like slightly unusual poses of animals to work on – candid shots can produce interesting portraits.
Pastelmat paper by Clarefontaine is a slightly unusual surface to use, almost like a very, very fine sandpaper so that the ‘tooth’ of the paper texture holds the chalkiness of pastels. I found it a tricky paper to use to start with but the more I use it the easier it gets and the end result makes for a smooth pastel painting, great for details.
These two beauts, Kiku and Kura, are owned by friends who live in Australia. They both have faces full of character and expression and I couldn’t resist trying to capture them. They are done with soft pastels (Unison) on Pastelmat paper which has a good ‘tooth’ for holding pastel. Fortunately, the drawings/paintings survived their global journey from the UK to the other side of the planet and arrived unscathed within a fortnight. Amazing! Well done postal service.
New pastel painting just completed – Unison pastels on Canson Mi-Teintes paper. This fluffy hunk is heading off to my page at Saatchi Art online to see if he can find a new owner. Wish him luck! 🤓
Further to my previous blog “Something New”, I’m happy to report that the German Shepherd pastel presented in a pre-cut mount has sold at my unit at Garrion Bridges, so time to get busy and get a few more pastels underway.
I found these pre-packed mounts in Cass Art and thought I would try doing some smaller pastels to fit them. I’ve made a start with a little Westie and a German Shepherd just to see how they do on my wall at the Garrion Bridges Antiques and Art centre.
As well as improving the presentation of the paintings, it allows the buyer to use or select their own frame which they can buy ‘off the peg’ as the mounts are standard sizes. The clear sleeves protect the pastels and allows a price to be attached to the painting without any damage to the paper or the mount.
Let’s see how they do.
This is the latest addition to my stock of artwork for sale at the Garrion Bridges Art & Antiques Centre. “Olive”, the deerhound has featured on this blog before and her pastel painting is now waiting for a new owner. I decided to pop this pastel onto a pre-cut mount, rather than having it framed, to give the buyer the opportunity to select their own frame, so we’ll see if this proves a good idea or not. If so, I’ll try a few more – back to the drawing board….literally! 🤓
Following a recent Twitter invitation from Artist & Illustrators magazine for people to send them images of portraits, I was amazed to hear that they would be including my pastel of my nephew Fraser, in their August issue letters page. It’s quite a small reproduction of the image in the magazine, but I’m SO chuffed that it was chosen! This is the painting on a slightly larger scale…
Here’s a noble looking breed of dog which I thought might work well in soft pastel, given its fluffy coat. I spotted this beauty with her owners in a car park in Ulverston and after a brief chat, they very kindly allowed me to take a few shots of her. She seemed very used to having her photo taken and posed fabulously! Hope I’ve done her justice.